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Recreational therapy- 1940 to 2006

complied by Jeffrey A. Mansfield

[ archives page | timeline index: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | compilation | bibliography | transcript | pictures]

1940-1959 (26,635 killed by nationwide polio epidemic)

1941 The US enters WWII, ends 1945

1941 Menninger Foundation established by psychiatrist Karl Augustus Menninger (1893-198?). A nonprofit organization dedicated to the furtherance of psychiatric research in Topeka, KS.

1941 AAHPER-News from the Therapeutic Section begins

1942 Karl Menninger "Love Against Hate" chapter 7 about play

1942 American Recreation Society, "recreation worker"

1943 Davis publishes "Principles and Practice of Rehabilitation"

1943 Pending Congressional action, the Red Cross Gray Ladies are cooperating with the Army Medical Corps by providing diversional occupations and recreation to wounded soldiers in Army Hospitals

1943 AAHPER-News from the Therapeutic Section column
"Great nationwide stress is also being placed on rehabilitation of the grossly crippled and handicapped, so that they may be mobilized for constructive service in meeting the manpower shortages in industry and civilian duty, service which is essential to keep our armies in the field." Rehabilitation of war casualties and maximum mobilization of manpower.

1943 Federal Vocational Rehabilitation Act of 6 JUL. 1943 (PL 190)
funds physical and vocational restoration, amendment to Vocational Rehabilitation Act of 1920 (PL113) "remunerative occupation"

1945 VA Recreation Service established. The objectives are: "to assist the doctor in getting his patients well, and to make life as satisfying and meaningful as possible for those patients who must remain in the hospital."

1945-1960 Increase in nursing homes

1946-1964 Steep increase in the U.S. birthrate following WWII called the "Baby Boom". 76 Million people are born accounting for nearly one-third of the U.S. population in 1980. The resulting uneven age distribution has had a multitude of social effects on educational systems, job markets, urban and suburban economies and so on, including almost every aspect of contemporary life.

1947 "American Physical and Mental Rehabilitation" APMR

1947 AOTA assumes responsibility of publication of its own organ, The American Journal of Occupational Therapy (current)
Occupational Therapy and Rehabilitation continued publishing

1948 American Recreation Society, Hospital Recreation Section

1948 College Recreation Association founded

194? APA forms Leisure Time Committee

1950 Korean War, ends 1953

1950 Dunton and Licht "Occupational Therapy Principles and Practice" ch: 12 Recreational Therapy authored by Davis; Defines RT as: "any free, voluntary and expressive activity; motor, sensory or mental, vitalized by an expansive play spirit, sustained by deep rooted pleasurable attitudes and evoked by wholesome emotional release; prescribed by medical authority as an adjuvant in treatment."

1950 Masters Programs
Springfield College; M.S. PE & Rec. in Rehabilitation
U of MN; M.S. Hospital Recreation (taught at med school)
Columbia U; PE & Rec. in Rehabilitation

1950 The National Association for Music Therapy is founded

1951 JHPER, v22 p13+ N '51 "We Prescribe Recreation"

1951 Esther Goetz Gillian (Ed.) "Music Therapy"

1951 VA "Recreation Service" VA Manual M6-4

1952 Davis writes book "Clinical Applications of Recreational Therapy"

1952 The Department of Physical Medicine, Graclyn Hospital, Winston Salem, N.C. offers the first 12 month Recreational Therapy internships.

1952 Bernath Eugene Phillips announces the creation of the Recreational Therapy Section of the American Association of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation, a branch of the National Education Association. The RTS replaces the Institutional half of the Industrial and Institutional Section.

1953 National Association of Recreational Therapists (NART) is established Feb. 1953, their official publication is the "Inter-State News"

1953 The Council for the Advancement of Hospital Recreation (CAHR) is formed in Feb. 1953 at a meeting held at NEA offices, and was attended by two representatives each of:
('48) American Recreation Society, Hospital Section (2 representatives)(Annabelle Story-ARC)
('52) AAHPER's Recreational Therapy Section (2) (Jack Anderson)
('53) National Association of Recreational Therapists (2)
('53) National Recreation Association's Hospital Consultant (originally 1, later 2)

1953 Sacramento State College offers B.A. in Recreational Therapy
San Francisco State College develops a Hospital Recreation program
New York University starts a Hospital Recreation Graduate program

1954 U of MN offers Hospital Recreation correspondence course

1954 The Revised 1954 Standards for Psychiatric Hospitals and Clinics, published by the APA, describes Activity Therapy as on of the professional services in the mental hospital, and further indicates that it "may be divided into occupational therapy and recreation."

1955 The first educational film on the therapeutic value of recreation for patients (hospital recreation) in the non-government hospitals "Rx for Recreation" (originally So Much for So Little) is a 28 minute color film produced by the NRA. The script was written by Beatrice Hill and Robert Wald, and was directed by Robert Wald, who produced the radio/TV series "American Inventory." The film premiered at the American Hospital Association convention the week of Sep. 20th, and again at the 37th National Recreation Congress.

1955 CAHR publishes the first hospital recreation personnel standards, separating registration into three sections: Hospital Recreation Director, Hospital Recreation Leader, and Hospital Recreation Aide.

1956 A critical shortage of physical therapists seriously impedes the national rehabilitation program. Over 5,800 jobs for qualified physical therapists are available throughout the US.

1956 The Veterans' Administration begins their Student Affiliate Recreation Trainee Program

1957 Bernath Eugene Phillips becomes CAHR's first registered Hospital Recreation Director at their Mar. 18, 1957 meeting in Chicago.

1957 SUNY Cortland offers a master's degree in Hospital Recreation
San Jose Starts a Hospital Recreation program, and is affiliated with the Palo Alto VA.
Texas Women's University offers Recreational Therapy bachelor's degree

1958 U of Iowa offers undergraduate and graduate specialization in Hospital Recreation

1958 NRA Hospital Recreation Consultant becomes Consulting Service on Recreation for the Ill and The Handicapped

1961 UNC-Chapel Hill hosts the 5th Regional Institute on Hospital Recreation. The theme was "Expanding Horizons".

1961 Beatrice Hill resigns after seven years as director of the NRA Consulting Service on Recreation for the Ill and the Handicapped to establish Comeback, Inc. Comeback, Inc. implements methods developed by the Homebound Recreation Demonstration Project, which was funded by the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation and conducted by the NRA. Comeback, Inc. is dedicated to serving the social rehabilitation needs of the ill and handicapped.

1965 The US sends troops to Vietnam, withdraws 1973

1965-present: Medicare (Health Insurance for the aged) is added to Social Security benefits, and Medicare starts regulating nursing homes.

1966 The NRA and ARS merge into the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA)

1966 On Sunday, October 9, 1966, the NRPA Board of Trustees in session at the Washington-Hilton Hotel, Washington, D.C., approved the Charter and Bylaws of the National Therapeutic Recreation Society and accepted NTRS as a professional branch of NRPA. NTRS takes over the administration of the credentialing program from CAHR.

196? First President's Panel on Mental Retardation

196? Passage of Public Law 90--170, which results in training grants and research for therapeutic recreation

196? PL 90-480 Architectural Barriers Act, tax incentives for barrier removal

196? Creation of Bureau of Education for Handicapped in Office of Education

196? First Special Olympics (Olympics for Retarded)

1967 On January 28, 1967, Hilton Motor Inn, Kansas City, Missouri, the first official meeting of the NTRS Board of Directors was held, and Ira J. Hutchinson was elected president...During the April mid-year meeting, President Hutchinson requested the board accept his resignation as president, so he could accept the NRPA position of "Consultant on Therapeutic Recreation." He also became NTRS Executive Secretary on a part-time basis...First publication of the Therapeutic Recreation Journal.

1969 David C. Park was appointed NRPA Therapeutic Recreation Specialist and NTRS Executive Secretary...The first Registration Board was convened under NTRS.

1971 Dr. Paul Haun, "Recreation: A Medical Viewpoint"

1971 Adoption of "NTRS Standards for Psychiatric Facilities," which were later incorporated into the JCAHO Accreditation Manual for Psychiatric Facilities...NTRS State Section Advisory Council established.

1972 Draft of the first NTRS Code of Ethics was completed...Legislative Action Committee was developed...Competencies for therapeutic recreation specialists were developed.

1973 PL 93-113 Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504

1974 PL 94-142 Education for All Handicapped

1974 NTRS Newsletter was developed.

1975 NTRS Field Placement Guidelines were completed...NTRS 750-Hour Training Program was completed...After David Park’s resignation, Yvonne A. Washington assumed the duties of NTRS Branch Liaison.

1975 Utah Recreation Therapy Licensure Rule goes in effect

2006 North Carolina Recreational Therapy Licensure Rule goes in effect

1976 A committee was established to develop a philosophical position statement on therapeutic recreation.

1977 White House conference on Handicapped

1977 NTRS Presidential Commission on Assessment of Critical Issues was established.

1977 Dictionary of Occupational Titles 076.124-014 RECREATIONAL THERAPIST:
Plans, organizes, and directs medically approved recreation program for patients in
hospitals and other institutions: Directs and organizes such activities as adapted sports,
dramatics, social activities, and arts and crafts, regulating content of program in
accordance with patients' capabilities, needs, and interest. Prepares reports for patient's
physician or treatment team, describing patients' reactions, and symptoms indicative of
progress or regression.

197? JCAHO Standards for TR in psychiatric facilities

197? NTRS 750-hour training program

1978 NTRS Registration Program was recognized by NRPA as the sole registering body for therapeutic recreation personnel.

1979 Guidelines for Community-Based Recreation Programs for Special Populations, Standards of Practice for Therapeutic Recreation Services, and Guidelines for Administration of Therapeutic Recreation Service in Clinical and Residential Facilities were developed by NTRS.

1980 NTRS conducted a national survey on the status of recreation as a related service in PL 94-142.

1981 National Council for Therapeutic Recreation Certification (NCTRC), formerly NTRS Board of Registration, became a completely autonomous credentialing body, administratively and financially independent from NRPA/NTRS...NTRS published Quality Assurance: Concerns for Therapeutic Recreation and Guidelines for Third-Party Reimbursement...Philosophical Position Statement on Therapeutic Recreation was accepted and endorsed by the membership and the Board of Directors of NTRS...Model Practice Act was developed by NTRS to assist states in addressing licensure...CARF incorporated therapeutic recreation services into their Standards Manual.

1981 Designated by the United Nations as the International Year of Disabled Persons
Designated by the United Nations as the International Year of Disabled Persons

1982-1989 (63,159 killed by AIDS)

1982 NTRS Philosophical Position Statement

1984 NTRS established National Therapeutic Recreation Week.

1984 The American Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA)

1985 "ATRA Annual" ATRA

1985 NTRS developed a Strategic Plan—at least 85 percent of the objectives were completed.

1987 NTRS published Philosophy of Therapeutic Recreation...NTRS developed a Marketing Committee...NTRS representative invited to attend the JCAHO PTAC meeting for the first time...Policies and Procedures Manual was revised, approved and disseminated to the NTRS Board of Directors...NTRS Regional Directors began to represent their region on NRPA Regional Councils.

1988 The first NTRS Board Retreat was held in Denton, Texas...The following topic areas were discussed: marketing, communications/publications, public policy, professional standards, and the NTRS committee structure. A work plan was developed to address issues within the topic areas...NTRS unveiled its new "logo" at the NRPA Congress.

1988 NCTRC job analysis establishes a unique and coherent body of knowledge

198? Blocked attempts to remove activity therapy opportunities in nursing homes regulations

198? Development of wellness centers

198? Development of private TR consultant firms

198? IDEA amendments

198? Older Americans Act Reauthorization

198? Older Americans Personal Welfare Education Training Act

1990 NCTRC and ETS (Educational Testing Service) administer first certification exam.

1990 Revised Standards for Internship in Therapeutic Recreation published...NTRS revised Guidelines for the Administration of Therapeutic Recreation Service was published...After Yvonne Washington’s resignation, Rikki S. Epstein assumed the duties of NTRS Program Manager...A revised Code of Ethics was adopted.

1990 Encyclopedia of Careers and Vocational Guidance, volumes 1 & 2.
Volume 2, page 577: As a form of medical treatment: "Recreational therapists plan, organize, and direct medically approved recreation programs for patients in hospitals and other institutions."
Volume 1, page 417: In the recreation and park service: "Therapeutic recreation staff: The development of classes, sites, and opportunities in recreation for the mentally and physically disabled is a relatively new area in research and development."

1991 Dictionary of Occupational Titles 076.124-014 RECREATIONAL THERAPIST: alternate title: therapeutic recreation worker:

"Plans, organizes, and directs medically approved recreation program for patients in hospitals and other institutions: Directs and organizes such activities as sports, dramatics, games, and arts and crafts to assist patients to develop interpersonal relationships, to socialize effectively, and to develop confidence needed to participate in group activities. Regulates content of program in accordance with patients' capabilities, needs and interests. Instructs patients in relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing, concentration, and other activities, to reduce stress and tension. Instructs patients in calisthenics, stretching and limbering exercises, and individual and group sports. Counsels and encourages patients to develop leisure activities. Organizes and coordinates special outings and accompanies patients on outings, such as ball games, sightseeing, or picnics to make patients aware of available recreational resources. Prepares progress charts and periodic reports for medical staff and other members of treatment team, reflecting patients' reactions and evidence of progress or regression. May supervise and conduct in-service training of other staff members, review their assessments and program goals, and consult with them on selected cases. May train groups of volunteers and students in techniques of recreation therapy. May serve as consultant to employers, educational institutions, and community health programs. May prepare and submit requisition for needed supplies."

1991 NTRS initiated a move to enhance the therapeutic recreation profession by establishing Ad Hoc Committees with NCTRC and ATRA...A proposed alternate certification plan was developed by NTRS...The NTRS 750-Hour Training Program for Therapeutic Recreation Assistant was revised.

1992 UT Title 58 Recreational Therapy Practice Act, licensure

1992 NTRS became an Associate Member of CARF and joined the JCAHO Coalition of Rehabilitation Therapy Organizations. Revised Preparing for a Career in Therapeutic Recreation... NTRS developed promotional kits to assist agencies in celebrating National Therapeutic Recreation Week, a national observance sponsored by NTRS.

1993 NTRS adopted a comprehensive Strategic Plan to guide the organization's work...A definition of therapeutic recreation was developed...An NTRS Vision Statement was approved...The NTRS Board approved the Research Proposal Guidelines and Criteria developed by the Research Committee, thereby establishing a program to provide partial funding of research projects which investigate the efficacy of therapeutic recreation services.

1994 NTRS approved Interpretive Guidelines for the Code of Ethics...Promoting Therapeutic Recreation—A Marketing Guide was published...NTRS and NRPA held the first annual National Therapeutic Recreation Professional Development Forum...NTRS focused grassroots advocacy efforts on the need for comprehensive health care reform...NTRS established an Ad Hoc Committee on International Affairs...NTRS completed "Therapeutic Recreation Practitioner Analysis Study."

1995 Western Carolina University is the first institution of higher education to offer B.S. in Recreational Therapy, offering a clinical perspective of recreation, rather than just a therapeutic bent to a recreation degree. WCU defines recreational therapy as the prescribed use of recreational and other activities as
treatment interventions to improve the functional living competence of persons with
physical, mental, emotional and/or social disadvantages.

1995 NTRS established the NTRS Fred Humphrey Internship Program...NTRS revised Standards of Practice for Therapeutic Recreation Services was published...Impacting Public Policy: An Advocacy Manual for Therapeutic Recreation and Manual for Recreation Therapy in Long-Term Care Facilities were published.

1996 CA Assembly Bill 2853-Recreation Therapy title legislation.

NTRS became a National Organization Patron of the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic Games...NTRS revised its Philosophical Position Statement...APRS and NTRS formed a joint committee on community recreation for people with disabilities...Understanding Financing and Reimbursement Issues was published...Philosophy of Therapeutic Recreation: Ideas and Issues, Volume II was published...Preparing for a Career in Therapeutic Recreation was updated...NRPA/NTRS established a Home Page on the Internet...Joint Task Force on Credentialing established by NTRS and ATRA...NTRS invited by the American Medical Association to include its information on "Preparing for a Career in Therapeutic Recreation" in the AMA’s 1997-1998 edition of Allied Health and Rehabilitation Professions Education Directory.

1997 Revised NTRS Internship Standards and Guidelines for Therapeutic Recreation were published...NTRS invited to participate in the Health Care Financing Administration’s (HCFA) Sharing Innovations in Quality Initiative...First NTRS Edith Ball Scholarship was presented...Revised NTRS Strategic Plan was approved...Position Statement on Inclusion adopted by NTRS...NTRS represented on CARF National Advisory Committee.

1998 NTRS was invited to submit written testimony to the Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Improving Quality in Long Term Care...Revised Manual for Recreation Therapy in Long Term Care and Preparing for a Career in Therapeutic Recreation published...NTRS approved Standards of Practice for Paraprofessinals in Therapeutic Recreation...NTRS and ATRA approved a Resolution and Letter of Agreement to Communicate, Cooperate and Collaborate...NTRS established new committees and task forces in the areas of technology, assistive technology, benefits training, adventure based programming, and therapeutic recreation in the schools...NTRS developed its own website...Consumer At-Large Director position was approved for the NTRS Board of Directors.

1999 NTRS met with the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA) regarding therapeutic recreation in long term care...NTRS and VSA arts entered into a partnership to collaborate on projects...Joint Task Force on Long Term Care established by NTRS and ATRA...NTRS Resolution on Inclusion was approved by the NRPA National Forum...NTRS received $17,000 in special funds from NRPA for the "Therapeutic Recreation—The Benefits are Endless...™" project.

2000 NTRS developed the "Therapeutic Recreation--The Benefits are Endless...™" training program and materials...Higher Education Work Group established by NTRS and ATRA...NRPA adopts the NTRS Position Statement on Inclusion as an NRPA policy...Revised NTRS Vision Statement was approved...NTRS developed a videotape highlighting the benefits of therapeutic recreation.

2001 State Recognition Options in Therapeutic Recreation: An Educational Resource was published by NTRS and ATRA...NTRS joined the Alliance for Disability Recreation and Sport...Best of Adventure Recreation was published...Joint Task Force on Higher Education was established by NTRS and ATRA.

2003 Nicki Booth was the first person to receive the Edith Ball Scholarship outisde of North America that was also studying therapeutic recreation in a foriegn country.

2005 NTRS testified in formal IDEA hearings across the country.

2006 NTRS celebrated its 40th Anniversary.




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